Yeo Woon-kay

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Yeo Woon-kay
Born (1940-02-25)February 25, 1940
Daegu, South Korea
Died May 22, 2009(2009-05-22) (aged 69)
Occupation Actress
Korean name
Hangul 여운계
Hanja 呂運計
Revised Romanization Yeo Un-gye
McCune–Reischauer Yǒ Un-kye

Yeo Woon-kay (February 25, 1940 – May 22, 2009) was a South Korean film actress and television personality. She was best known for Korean films such as Money’s Warfare, Bad Family and My Name is Kim Sam Soon.

Yeo began acting while in high school. She continued to act while attending Korea University, where she studied literature.[1] She became known for her work in daehakgeuk, which is also called amateur student theater, during the 1950s and 1960s, alongside other contemporary Korean actors like Lee Soon-jae.[1][2]

She made her professional theater debut with a theater troupe in 1962.[1] From theater, she was able to transition to a successful television career.[1] She often played the role of a grandmother or "grandmotherly figure" in roles beginning in her twenties.[1] Examples of these characters included her roles in Toji in 1986 and Jewel in the Palace in 2003.[1]

Ms.Yeo was diagnosed with kidney cancer in 2007 while shooting the SBS movie The King and I.[1] But she continued to act and began work on the KBS2 production of Jang-hwa and Hong-ryeon (The Tale of Two Sisters).,[1] eventually quitting the production due to pneumonia, indicating the spread of cancer to her lungs.[1]

Yeo entered the hospital intensive care unit in May 2009.[1] Reports say that she fell into a coma and was placed on life support.[1] She died around 8 P.M. on May 22, 2009, at the Incheon Catholic Medical Center in Incheon, South Korea, at the age of 69. Her funeral was held at the Yonsei University Severance Hospital.[1][3]

Yeo was awarded the Life Achievement Award posthumously at the KBS Drama Awards in 2009.


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